How can you prepare for your disability benefits claim?

If you find yourself in a position in which you are unable to work and support yourself, you could face financial struggles and other complications. An inability to work means you will not have sufficient income to cover your needs, and things such as housing, clothing, coverage of bills and health care can become serious financial concerns. If you are unable to work due to a mental or physical condition, you could be eligible for financial support. 

The Social Security Administration offers different options for individuals who are unable to maintain gainful employment. Through Supplemental Security Income and Supplemental Security Disability Insurance, you may be able to secure critical financial help. Before you file your claim, however, you will have to gather certain documentation. 

Filing for the benefits you need 

Even with a valid disability claim, it can be quite difficult to secure the benefits you need and deserve. The SSA has strict eligibility requirements, and many initial claims come back denied. Before you move forward with the claims process, it may be helpful to ensure that you have what you need to prove your disability. Some of the required documentation includes: 

  • Proof of birth, such as a birth certificate 
  • Proof of citizenship or proof of lawful resident status 
  • W-2 forms or self-employment tax return papers 
  • Papers that prove your discharge from the military 
  • Medical documentation, such as bills, letters from doctors and more 
  • Pay stubs, settlement agreements and anything else that validates your inability to work 

When you apply, you will have to complete paperwork and provide specific types of documentation. You may also have to submit to an interview or provide answers to questions pertaining to your name, gender, work history, the nature of your disability, Social Security information, previous military service, number of children you have and more. The Administration evaluates each application based on the details of the individual case. 

Fighting for rightful support 

You do not have to navigate the potentially complex and difficult disability benefits application process alone. You will find it helpful to have the support and insight of an experienced Illinois legal professional who can accurately assess your situation and determine the merit of your case. This will also provide you with insight regarding the specific types of documentation you may need for your claim. 


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The Law Office of William C. Wombacher

Local: 309-674-8125
Fax: 309-674-8149

Commerce Bank Building
416 Main Street Suite 700
Peoria, IL 61602
NELF | National Elder Law Foundation
CAP | Council of Advanced Practitioners | NAELA | National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.
Illinois State Bar Association